Old Testament 2022
November 7–13. Hosea 1–6; 10–14; Joel: “I Will Love Them Freely”

“November 7–13. Hosea 1–6; 10–14; Joel: ‘I Will Love Them Freely,’” Come, Follow Me—For Sunday School: Old Testament 2022 (2021)

“November 7–13. Hosea 1–6; 10–14; Joel,” Come, Follow Me—For Sunday School: 2022

bride and groom on temple grounds

November 7–13

Hosea 1–6; 10–14; Joel

“I Will Love Them Freely”

As you study and prepare this week, consider which of the beautiful and uplifting messages from the books of Hosea and Joel might help meet the needs of those you teach.

Record Your Impressions

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Invite Sharing

To help class members share what they learned this week, you could invite them to write on the board a word or phrase that inspired them during their study. Then they could share why the word or phrase is meaningful to them. These words and phrases may help guide the rest of your discussion.

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Teach the Doctrine

Hosea 1–3; 14

The Lord always invites us to return to Him.

  • You might begin a discussion of Hosea 1–3 by writing marriage on the board and asking class members to list words that they associate with marriage. How is making a covenant with the Lord like entering into a marriage? How is breaking that covenant like being unfaithful to a spouse? (see Hosea 2:5–7, 13). Then the class could talk about how the relationship between Hosea and Gomer symbolizes the relationship between the Lord and His people. What do Hosea 2:14–23 and Hosea 14 teach us about the Lord’s love and mercy? How do we show the Lord our love and loyalty to Him?

  • Hosea 14 describes many beautiful promises the Lord made to the house of Israel if they would return to Him. Perhaps class members could search this chapter looking for these promises. What did the Lord say He would do? What might the phrase “love them freely” mean? (verse 4). What do the plant metaphors in verses 5–8 teach us about the Lord’s blessings to us, including the blessings of repentance?

    woman sitting on ground with man placing hand on head

    Sinful Gomer, who represents Israel, was offered redemption by the Lord. Illustration by Deb Minnard, licensed from goodsalt.com

Hosea 6:6; Joel 2:12–13

Devotion to God must be felt inwardly, not just expressed outwardly.

  • Hosea 6:6 and Joel 2:12–13 refer to animal sacrifice and tearing clothing as signs of remorse. While such practices may be unfamiliar today, these verses can lead to a discussion about what is most important to the Lord. You might read together Hosea 6:6 and discuss what this verse might mean. Invite some class members to read Matthew 9:10–13 and others to read Matthew 12:1–8. Then class members could teach each other how these events in the Savior’s ministry help us understand the principle taught in Hosea 6:6. How can we live this principle in our day?

    You could also read together Joel 2:12–13 and discuss what it might mean to rend our hearts and not just our garments. What do we learn from these verses about what it means to be true disciples of Jesus Christ?

Joel 2

“I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh.”

  • To begin a discussion of Joel 2, you could share with the class what Moroni said about this prophecy when he visited Joseph Smith in 1823 (see Joseph Smith—History 1:41). Class members could share how they feel the prophecies in Joel 2:28–32 are being fulfilled in our day. You could also discuss how Elder David A. Bednar’s words in “Additional Resources” relate to Joel’s prophecy. Class members might discuss what it means to them to feel an outpouring of the Holy Ghost in their daily life. What can we do if we feel like we aren’t receiving that outpouring? How can we help “[our] sons and [our] daughters” receive it? (verse 28).

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Additional Resources

“We can count on the Holy Ghost guiding us.”

Elder David A. Bednar taught:

“We often make it hard on ourselves to receive personal revelation. By that I mean, the covenant promise is that as we honor our covenants, we may always have the Holy Ghost to be our constant companion. But we talk about it and we treat it as if hearing the voice of the Lord through His Spirit is the rare event. … [The Spirit] ought to be with us all of the time. Not every nanosecond, but if a person is doing his or her best—you don’t have to be perfect—but if you and I are doing our best and we’re not committing serious transgression, then we can count on the Holy Ghost guiding us. …

“… We seem to believe that the Holy Ghost is dramatic and big and sudden, when it’s still and small and incremental over time. You don’t have to recognize that you are receiving revelation in the moment that you are receiving revelation” (“Elder David A. Bednar Discussion” [evening with a General Authority, Feb. 7, 2020], broadcasts.ChurchofJesusChrist.org).

Improving Our Teaching

Be welcoming. Learners need to know that you care about them and their spiritual growth. One good way to show them this is by greeting them warmly as they arrive to class. (See Teaching in the Savior’s Way, 15.)